Watching the lunar eclipse the night of Sunday, Sept. 27 got me thinking about shadows and the balance of light and dark. As we sat at the edge of the lake and accompanied the eclipse with sound, the Earth cast a long shadow over the full fall supermoon.
The Earth blocked out all the sun’s light, so our moon appeared blood red instead of bright white or bluish. This blood red moon is a rare occurence; it has not happened since 1982 and, apparently, will not happen again until 2033.
This moon was a supermoon because it was at its perigee–its closest orbit to Earth. That’s why it looks so much bigger, the gravitational pull is so strong, and the tides are so high. (I don’t think I’ve ever seen such high tides at the shore!)
How could something so huge and bright be quickly darkened and somber? Like the blazing sunshine of summer at the sea swiftly burning out. Luscious greens turning to crimson then brown crispy leaves littering lawns. Plant life around us withering and dying. Mother Nature stops feeding them chlorophyll so her trees can be put to bed for the winter. The twilight time of the year as days grow shorter.
The Shadow is a strong force. We saw beauty in our recent lunar eclipse because our intellect knew what was happening. We knew it was not the end of the world, as humans millenia ago must have imagined. Our awareness kept us from fearing and allowed us to appreciate the beauty of the moment.
The Shadow Self can be a powerful voice. What is our own shadow and how can we coexist with it? It can speak fear, worry, doubt, anxiety, grief. . . .If it is the voice of addiction, it can try to drown us in its disease. If it is the voice of shame or blame, it can plague us for years; we sometimes use that voice in speaking to our children and other loved ones. It doesn’t ever seem to go away.
When confronted with our own shadow, our own darkness in this darkest time of the year–between the autumnal equinox and winter solstice–remember that for every dark night of the soul is a brilliant sunny morning–a brand new day to begin fresh. And even in your darkly shadowy times, you always have the sacred light of the Divine within you. Our awareness, bringing our thoughts back to the present moment, can shift us out of the darkness into light. Our connection to spirit, the sacred and divine, can restore us to a place of love and trust. One breath at a time, we can appreciate so many things in our life and give gratitude for the unknown blessings already on their way.
Don’t let your shadow eclipse you. If you are feeling off-balanced, depressed, or lonely this time of year, then reach out to an old friend, attend a community event, make music with your friends and neighbors, take a lot of Vitamin D [my healthcare professional suggests 10,000 IU’s a day for those of us wintering in Maine], go for a walk in the woods, play a game with a child, schedule an energy session, or just find a quiet place to sit and breathe–to be present with yourself and open to the Divine flowing through you. In this moment, “I have right now everything I need.”
Like the moon, we need to pass through the shadow. Not stop along the path and give in to fear or doubt. We’ve got to keep moving through it, to get to the lighter side of life again.
Namaste: The Divine light in me acknowledges the Divine light in you.
Autumnal blessings: My shadow embraces and honors your shadow.